AFCON Afcon 2023: Gambia secures back-to-back ticket for finals

2021 debutants Gambia secured their place in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) after scoring two late goals to draw Congo Brazzaville 2-2 in a group G matchday six fixture in Marrakesh, Morocco on Sunday.

Gambia came into the match occupying second spot in the group with nine points, six behind table toppers Mali. Congo Brazzaville were in third position with six points while South Sudan were bottom after amassing three points in six matches. With Mali already qualified, one spot was up for grabs. Gambia needed just a point to go through while Congo needed nothing but a win by any margin to go through on head-to-head.

Congo were one step into the AFCON at halftime. They had netted an opener through Gaius Makouta at the half-hour mark before Silvere Ganvoula converted a controversially awarded penalty in the 45th minute. The Paul Put-coached Congo Brazzaville were left sweating with panic in the 78th minute as Gambia’s substitute Yankuba Minteh pulled one back from close range via a Muhammad Badammosi assist to set up a nail-biting conclusion.

Read Also: Afcon 2023: Ivory Coast close off qualifiers with win

Gambia completed the comeback in the 90th minute with Badammosi netting a superb header to send the 2021 quarterfinalists to the AFCON. Congo’s next competitive fixture will be away to Zambia on matchday one of the 2026 FIFA World Cup in mid-November.

The Scorpions become the 22nd team to qualify for the 2023 AFCON. Two spots remain and will be decided on Tuesday in Group C. Cameroon hosts Burundi in Garoua in the final showdown of the qualifiers. Namibia are top of the group with five points in four matches while Burundi and Cameroon are tied on four points each.

Dennis Mabuka

Dennis Mabuka is a seasoned Kenyan journalist with 18 years of experience covering sports events. He is currently a sport content creator with

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